Things I Found

After sleeping through most of an unexpected sick day, I took advantage of my remaining toddler-free time by:

Watching Dr. Phil or Judge Judy? Nope.
Treating myself to a soak in the tub or a DIY pedicure? Ha!
Beginning an overly ambitious organization project? Ding ding!

My goal: sort through a few boxes from the garage we had moved to make room for Chris’s new workbench, aka his latest dissertation procrastination strategy/creative outlet. I think I tossed 99% of the boxes’ contents in the recycle (Key takeaways: WHY did I think that saving my coursepack readings from undergrad was worth the space? And how much money did I waste? Seriously, I could have I taken that $67.61 I spent on pesky soc readings and applied them to the finer things in life. Such as delicious treats, or a cute wardrobe. Priorities).

Anyway, amidst the flurry of maniacal paper-purging, I did manage to find a few things that made me smile, such as a receipt of flowers delivered to me when I was studying abroad in 2004:

Pour moi? Mais oui!

Pour moi? Mais oui!

Also from 2004, part of my “Arts and Ideas in the Humanities” midterm that shows, if nothing else, my finely cultivated handwriting. Really, it’s an art that I’m probably a little too proud of:

I remember exactly none of this.

I remember exactly none of this.

And finally, what would college be without an ill-advised creative writing class to produce terrible poetry?

Think deep thoughts.

Think deep thoughts.

I recently started reading Gretchen Rubin’s “Happier at Home” and have decided to follow her lead of displaying the things that make you happy. I think this one is called “Shrine to admirers/good handwriting/entertaining bad poetry.”

On Paczkis and Other Notables

I recently discovered that 5 of my 6 coworkers had NO IDEA what a paczki was.

Evidently paczkis are not A Thing here in Minnesota the way they are in Michigan.

What? WHAT?

Obviously, I had to remedy this:

YES PLEASE

YES PLEASE

The paczki, to the uninitiated, is a Polish Fat Tuesday tradition and is also known as the Most Delicious Jelly Doughnut Ever. Note that I am not Polish. Nor do I like doughnuts, for the most part. But I ADORE paczkis. In my Ann Arbor middle school, Paczki Day was basically a national holiday. Most of the teachers sold them in class, and I think in seventh grade I ate three in one day. That was a pretty great day.

Now that I have educated my coworkers on the all-important paczki, I think I may have pinholed myself into being Paczki Santa for years to come. I suppose that’s not such a bad thing.

Onward and upward, to baby breakdancing training Part 1, aka Conor Finds My Tap Shoes (note: no photo, just a video link–since I’m cheap and won’t pay to upgrade my blog to allow embedded videos):

https://vimeo.com/59501759

Ok, so maybe I’m exaggerating a little. Still, I think he has promise.

Finally, as charming as this snowy scene might be….

Not cool, snow. Not cool.

Not cool, snow. Not cool.

I cannot wait to GET OUT OF HERE. I want to sleep. On the beach. Our upcoming tropical trip basically makes me feel like this (thanks to coworker Kristina for sending me this horrifying link). Moment 3:06 in is my favorite:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJQVlVHsFF8

And apparently these are the types of things that I find entertaining when I’ve been up since 3:45 with a wide-awake toddler. Note to self: get more sleep.

Over and out.

Accomplishments

You might think a post like this would feature some lofty and brag-worthy recent feats. Mom of the Year. The quarterly Most-Functional-Despite-Least-Hours-of-Sleep award. Sexiest Woman Alive.

All in due time.

Instead, my recent accomplishments have been a little, shall we say, subdued. Behold my first feat of skill and daring:

Ouch.

Ouch.

Yes, that is my wedding ring in a bowl foregrounded by my swollen, sausagey finger (aka: the reason why I’m postponing acceptance of my Sexiest Woman Alive award until next year). The last time I was pregnant I couldn’t get my ring off, so I figured that this time I would be proactive and remove it early, before I cut off all circulation to my finger. While I still could. Unfortunately, I happen to be a wimp. Despite using:

  • 1. Dish soap
  • 2. Windex
  • 3. Dental floss

 

It still hurt too much. Finally, while watching The Bachelor, I was filled with a sudden sense of courage. Maybe it was the pregnancy hormones and how they make me want to become deeply invested in shows like The Bachelor. Anyway, I gave my outstretched finger to Chris, squinched up my eyes and nose, looked away, and whispered, “Just PULL.”

And it worked!

Onward to bigger and better things. Witness Exhibit 2:

Yummy in my tummy.

Yummy in my tummy.

This is the bread that I wish I had baked. The actual loaf I baked was too embarrassing to photograph because I somehow picked the wrong setting on the bread machine and it turned out looking like a lumpy, fossilized elephant turd. The featured loaf of bread, on the other hand was technically baked by Chris. However, I am claiming this as my own accomplishment because I

(1) measured the ingredients, and everyone knows that measurement is key to success in baking; and

(2) I did that despite my previous baking catastrophe, and everyone knows that success in life comes from picking yourself up after falling down, or some inspirational quote like that. Mwaha.

 

And, finally, Exhibit 3:

Hide the evidence.

Hide the evidence.

Those of you in my Facebook entourage may have observed that I recently took Conor to a comic book store with Chris and some friends. In theory this seemed like a good idea. In practice I realized it meant coming up with Macguyver-like methods for preventing Conor from grabbing and ripping to shreds every comic in sight. And let me tell you, there were a lot of comics in sight.

I am pleased to report unprecedented success due to the following strategies:

  • 1. Outfitting Conor in giant puffy mittens
  • 2. Directing Conor to action figures safely encased in plastic
  • 3. Encouraging Conor to climb under and around the furniture
  • 4. Using the phrase “Go find Dada” repeatedly and often

 

I hearby award myself the title of Wrangler Extraordinaire.

I didn’t know I was pregnant

Surprise!

Bebe numero dos

Bebe numero dos

So I’ve never actually watched that show, but I always found the premise to be somewhat sketchy. How do you just NOT KNOW that you’re pregnant? Wouldn’t something of that nature be, um, a little obvious?

Well, friends, I can now say with confidence that I, Audrey Flack, have successfully gone through almost the entirety of the first trimester having NO IDEA THAT I WAS PREGNANT.

Halloween? Pregnant.

Starettes show, complete with grueling tech week rehearsals followed by hour-long drives home, a baby with stomach flu sitting on top of me at 2 am and vomiting in my face (yes, that actually happened) and early-morning daycare drop-offs? Yep, pregnant then.

High school reunion, during which I drank gin and tonics basically the entire evening? Pregnant then, too.

In retrospect, it is hard for me to fathom how I did NOT imagine that I was pregnant, given that I experienced all of the following:

a) Unexplained and bizarre cravings (rationale: I’m dancing nonstop! I need protein)!

b) Exhaustion (rationale: I’m dancing nonstop! Followed by: It’s the holidays!)

c) Barfing (rationale: my coffee creamer must have gone bad!)

d) Sleeping a lot (my rationale: Family visits are exhausting! It’s the holidays!)

e) Too-tight pants (my rationale: I’ve stopped dancing and am still eating like a pig! It’s the holidays!)

f) Receiving RANDOM CONGRATULATIONS ON BEING PREGNANT from strangers  (My responses: (1) be uber-pissed, (2) vow to dust off my Insanity workout DVDs. (In the new year, of course. It’s the holidays!)

Basically, everyone knew that I was pregnant except for myself. I am pleased to inform you all that I am now aware of this fact. Hopefully I have not traumatized my future progeny beyond all recognition.

And guess what? I’m almost done with the first trimester! Less time to wait to find out the gender! Morning sickness is almost over! Really, this whole being-so-hopelessly-out-of-touch-with-oneself thing is turning out to be a pretty good deal.

And now, please to enjoy some charming photos of bebe numero uno himself. He has recently adopted many of my favorite activities, including yoga:

Snowga?

Snowga?

And eating too much Mexican food:

Table manners.

Table manners.

Still working on the baby breakdancing training. It. Will. Happen.

Back in the habit

(note: isn’t that the subtitle of Sister Act 2)?

Well hi, blog! Remember me? SO I did that thing again…

Me: (logs in to WordPress). “I’m gonna update the blog!” (checks date of last post)

Blog: silent

Me: (stress level rising at realization that over a month has passed) “It’s been awhile.”

Blog: silent

Me: “Maybe I should rethink this whole concept that I have going here. It seems overambitious and doomed to failure. What happened October 11th? Or October 29th? And the real question: should I instagram this photo of my foot for dramatic effect?”

Blog: silent

Me: “How is it that all these mommy bloggers I follow have time to do all these posts? And why is their wardrobe just so awesome?” (looks down at food-stained shirt covered in crumbs)

Blog: silent

Me: “This hurts my head. I’m going to check Facebook.” (logs out)

Anyway, on to 3 random photos of my life approximately recently, in no particular order and of no particular importance:

About a month ago I realized that I spend about 8 gajillion hours in the car going to and fro between Minneapolis and exurbia and back for rehearsal and discovered The Audiobook:

Guess which one I finished first?

Um, where have you been all my life??? The Audiobook has been almost as life-changing for me as The Internets. As you can see, I like to mix it up a little. A little Chelsea, a little motivational reading. I love cheesy motivational books. They make me happy. I eat it all up. I wish I were kidding but I’m not.

Also, I have developed a new strategy to get the really important things in life done, such as flipping through cooking magazines while sipping wine: it’s called Ignore The Mess:

Domestic bliss.

You would be amazed at what I can now tolerate with the knowledge that my friend the vacuum cleaner is only a closet away and is surprisingly efficient. Win for Conor, win for me.

Finally:

Go bananas?

(Blurry) baby in monkey costume. That’s all.

September 23-28

So, my big blogging comeback was short-lived, as you can see. Luckily, I very wisely didn’t call this blog 3 Photos A Day, so I can maintain the delusional-but-effective view that this was all totally envisioned and accounted for from the beginning. Why not 3 photos a week? 3 photos every-seven-to-ten-days-or-so? Such versatility. Bravo, self. Bravo.

With that, join me in a TIME-TRAVELING ADVENTURE  to the last week of that fair month, September:

My entourage.

Back in Ye Oldene Days of September, it wasn’t 45 degrees like it is now, but we were evidently preparing Conor well for the impending cold by brushing up on our jacket-wearing skills.  Since Chris needed the car to drive my mom back to the airport later that morning, I was kindly chauffeured to work by my entourage above, after which time Mom took Conor to the Happiest Place on Earth, aka Target. Evidently Conor sat peacefully in the cart the entire time. I am simultaneously awestruck and envious of her ninjalike baby-whispering skills.

Following my mom’s departure, it was time for Chris and I to take our budding genius to the doctor for his 12-month checkup:

Baby Einstein.

After showing off his ability to fling nearly every piece of medical equipment from the exam room tables, karate chop the nurse’s foot, and munch on the bulb to a blood pressure cuff, Conor was pronounced healthy and developmentally on track, despite the above photographic evidence that would suggest otherwise.

I guess we know where he gets it:

Ta-da!

Yep, that would be my shirt, inside out, the following morning. Fortunately I discovered this BEFORE actually getting out of my car and entering the building.  I’m a smart cookie.

September 22nd

I don’t know how it all came together, but it did.

3 hours of sleep + early morning trip to airport to pick up Mom + multiple failed attempts to paint dinosaurs on treat bags + last-minute photo selection and printing care of Target’s 1-hour photo + dinosaur cake decorating =….success?

The birthday boy wants none of that camera nonsense.

Sooo….my dino cake looked maybe 15% like a dinosaur, and the rest maybe 5% squirrel, 5% armadillo and 75% amorphous blob with sprinkles added for good measure. Presentation of baked goods has never been my strong suit. Deliciousness, yes. Prettiness, no.

I should also add that this feat would never have been possible without (a) my mom, frosting chef and decor expert extraordinaire, and (b) Chris, who became the treat bag/photo collage/run-to-the-store-multiple-times-in-a-panic guru without even complaining. To my delight, Mom also was an expert Conor-wrangler:

Grandma-baby bonding.

Thank goodness.

Also, let me just say that my midnight-to-3a.m. posterboard-cutting skills are truly unrivaled:

Sniffle.

Looking at all those baby photos made me uncharacteristically weepy. Good thing there was way too much sugar on hand to power me through.